Tuesday, April 21, 2009

catching up...

Two weeks ago I observed my 50th birthday. At some point I'll start acting my age, maybe when I'm 60.

Here's one for the numerologists in the crowd: within a period of three weeks I turned 50, my step-mom turned 80, and my niece Marianne turns 20. So I'm in the middle, with a fabulous woman 30 years on either side. ;)

My birthday week was a tad hectic. On the Monday I was at the re-Cycles shop from noon until 5pm, then had to zoom home, gulp dinner, then load the trike and head off to the weekly Propeller Dance gig (where the gang gave me a fabulous pre-birthday celebration).

On Tuesday, I was up at 7:30am (yikes!) to head into the recording studio for three days with a new group I've joined called "Art Nuvo" (more on them later). I was home from that by 4:30, then off to a b'day dinner 'til 8pm, then picked up at 8:30 for an IJO rehearsal that lasted until about 11:30.

Wednesday saw another 7:30am wake-up, and I got home from that session around 4:30 again, then had a 3-hour choir rehearsal from 6-9.

Thursday was like Tuesday, without the b'day dinner in the middle. Thankfully I had nothing booked for Friday, and I did as little as possible. Ok, so I spent three hours sorting stuff at the re-Cycles shop, but that was on my own schedule, and it had no music! My ears were a tad fried by this point...

The following weekend was busy, and by then I had run myself down and was sniffling with a cold by Monday. And it became the worst cold I've had in three years (after not being sick all winter), and I spent a bunch of time half passed out on the couch. So if spread out over the past two weeks I guess I did a normal amount of work. :P

While I was sick I watched an excellent BBC documentary about the Second World War, produced in 1973 and running for almost 24 hours. It had been uploaded to YouTube in the allotted 10-minute increments, so it took a while to wade through, both mentally and emotionally. But I finally have a full understanding of the insanity of that war: approx. 60 million dead, and half of those were Russians. The Nazi ideology, the various cold and calulated programs they put in place, how much the German populace bought into it all... (let's face it - none of it would've happend if most of the people had not wanted it.) Truly wrenching stuff, but I would consider it mandatory viewing.

Here's the playlist link.

Monday, April 13, 2009

IJO gig this week

Got another cool concert coming up with the Impressions in Jazz Orchestra.

We're doing the fabulous "Far East Suite" by Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn, along with a newer work called the "Chicago Concerto", written by Richard Peaslee. This is for baritone saxophone and Big Band, and was originally written for jazz great Gerry Mulligan.

Mike Tremblay will be the bari soloist, and some of the music is giving us quite the challenge (odd time signatures and that sort of thing). Rick Rangno will also be playing a beautiful piece by Peaslee called "Nightsongs" for fluegelhorn and strings.

Full details at the IJO site. I'll of course be using my cargo trike to get to this gig. ;)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

tech blending

Last summer I bought a new mouse for my Mac, and in December I bought a new electric razor. They look similar enough to confuse me in my morning dopiness if I shave while at the computer...

folding trailer

A friend of mine sent me this link: A wheel-y unique idea for commuter cyclists: Milton university engineering student co-inventor of collapsible bike trailer.